Louisiana encourages residents to pre-apply for disaster food aid as Tropical Storm Bonnie approaches

July 24th, 2010 - 1:54 am ICT by BNO News  

BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA (BNO NEWS) – The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) encouraged residents to pre-apply online for disaster food assistance as Tropical Storm Bonnie is expected to enter the Gulf of Mexico on late Friday.

DCFS urged citizens to prepare for any potential disaster by acquiring Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits (DSNAP), formerly called Disaster Food Stamps.

“Hurricane season is well underway, and this year the potential for disaster is compounded by the oil spill affecting our coast. I strongly urge all residents, especially those living in our coastal parishes, to take advantage of our online pre-application for DSNAP,” said DCFS Secretary Ruth Johnson.

The pre-application process does not guarantee the benefits but will save residents time, prevent long waits, and facilitate the collection of the required information before a disaster strikes. DSNAP provides food assistance for eligible households who do not receive regular SNAP benefits and who need help buying groceries due to lost income or damages following a disaster.

“I hope all residents will make pre-applying online for DSNAP part of their hurricane preparedness game plan. By completing the pre-application online, residents are taking a proactive step to prepare themselves and their families for a disaster,” Jonson added.

After a disaster is declared, residents who have pre-applied only need to visit a DSNAP issuance site to verify their information and identity determine final eligibility and receive their benefit cards.

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